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Graham Hill and Powder Mill Trail Loop

MODERATE 57 reviews

Graham Hill and Powder Mill Trail Loop is a 4.2 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Scotts Valley, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 4.2 miles Elevation Gain: 826 feet Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash


horseback riding

nature trips


bird watching




wild flowers


A moderate hike from the oak scrub down to the San Lorenzo River in Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park This is a moderate hike that will take you from the oak scrub along the Graham Hill trail, through the verdant Redwood jungle along the Powder Mill Creek and finally down to the San Lorenzo River bottom on the steep Buckeye trail. Most of the hike is sandy single track that holds up well even after a good wash, but as it's in the shade most of the time, it would be a great hike on a hot day. The San Lorenzo River doesn't live up to its name after months of dry weather, but during the rainy season it gets quite full.

over grown
1 month ago

Over grown with poison oak in some places. Also Most of the trail was on soft sand so it was great for my dog but my feet hurt after a while.

over grown
6 months ago

The Graham Hill trail follows closely to the road and is mostly single track, surrounded by poison oak. It is marked locally as dog friendly, but the fire roads in the park recommended instead as they are more scenic, more open (less poison oak risk) and quieter. Those roads including Powder Mill and Pipeline go through pretty forest and offer lots of shade. Suggest pipeline as an out and back and divert to the Redwood Grove if you can (we took turns, one with the dog on the fire trail and the other went through the no dog grove, then switch on our return).

Wed Oct 03 2018

Yes can confirm the graham hill trail is not recommended due to poison oak over growth..powder hill is open and in great condition.. i would recommend parking about a mile down the road toward sc from the spot the directions take u to because it is free rather than ten bucks!

Sun Sep 02 2018

When we arrived at the trail, the parking attendant told us that the graham hill trail was actually 1.1 miles and overrun with poison oak (ok for people but not so much for dogs). She recommended going down a mile south towards treetop drive to pipeline trail, which was a in and out trail that totaled 6.6 miles. That was beautiful, on a paved path, featured amazing redwoods, some views, and a river. Also free parking!

Sun Apr 29 2018

it is a moderately decent trail. if you want to get into the woods, it's perfect.

Sun Apr 08 2018

Nice paved trail for dogs but the trail part of the loop back may not be dog friendly.. no signs on the way up but there are signs once you meet up with graham hill trail that say no dogs. Graham hill follows the road and is noisy, not my favorite but okay to avoid out and back.

Tue Nov 14 2017

Beautiful area, but the Graham Hill part of the trail is actually along the road. The paved trail along the park is dog friendly. I think it is called Pinehill road. Beautiful park and camp ground.

Tue Jun 20 2017

Beautiful, shady hike for a warm summer day! I was not expecting to dip my toes in the San Lorenzo but the water felt great after a long descent. In early summer, the wildflowers were incredible.

Wed Oct 19 2016

It was beautiful. Mostly shaded. Only ran into a few people. There are a lot of places to enter without paying for parking. There are A LOT of trails so just pay attention to the app so you know you're on the path you want to be on.

Wed Aug 03 2016

Everything you look for in a trail! Sandy-soiled ponderosa, fern-blanketed creek-valleys, and all the oak and bay in between!

2 months ago

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